Sunday’s vital Betfred League 1 promotion play-off final between Swinton Lions and Doncaster will be screened exclusively live and free on The Sportsman.
The Dons secured their place in the season-ending showdown on Sunday with a comprehensive 52-20 defeat of Rochdale Hornets in their preliminary final at the Eco-Power Stadium. Their reward is another shot at the Lions at Heywood Road.
The two sides previously came head-to-head in the qualifying semi-final, with Swinton coming out on top 32-12. Now they meet again for a place in the Betfred Championship in 2023.
- Uncapped Hornby called up for England RLWC squad
- Why Rob Burrow continues to inspire
- Betfred's NRL Grand Final odds*
Swinton will go into the fixture as slight favourites thanks to their home advantage, gained from having finished in second place behind unbeaten champions Keighley Cougars in the regular season. Doncaster finished down in fourth, two points further adrift, but did win 26-12 at Heywood Road in July. That result was payback for a 64-22 loss at home to Swinton in Round 3.
But Sunday’s clash will decide who goes up alongside Keighley to replace relegated Dewsbury Rams and Workington Town in the second tier of British rugby league.
Doncaster are looking to return to the Championship after a seven-year stint in the lowest professional league. They fell at this hurdle last season, losing out 36-12 to Workington, having previously reached a promotion final in 2019 and semi-finals in 2016 and 2018.
For Swinton a victory would give them an immediate return to the Championship following their relegation alongside Oldham last term. Allan Coleman, who was in temporary charge of the Lions for the latter stages of the 2021 campaign, was named their head coach for 2022 and has led the Greater Manchester side to 17 wins out of 21 through the regular season and play-offs.
*18+ | BeGambleAware | Odds Subject to Change